Swaziland : UHC leaving no one behind in the Kingdom of Eswatini

The scoping team from right to left: Dr Stanley Midzi ,Dr Juliet Nabyonga ,Dr. Akin. Oyemakinde and an officer from the Ministry of Health. Photo: RR

NEWSROOM (ADV) – The World Health Organization (WHO) recently conducted the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) scoping exercise in the Kingdom of Eswatini from 28 January to 1 February 2019. The exercise was led by the Ministry of Health with participation of other stakeholders.

The Kingdom of Eswatini is working towards achieving UHC as highlighted in the National Health Policy 2018 and the National Health Sector Strategic Plan 2014-2018. A country is said to have attained Universal Health Coverage (UHC) when all people and communities can use the promotive, preventive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative health services.

UHC is also a major focus for the WHO’s General Programme of Work (GPW13) and one of the flagship programmes for the African Region. The aim of WHO is to support and promote the development and implementation of coordinated results-oriented health systems strengthening actions in member states, with a focus on achieving a sustainable and measurable Universal Health Coverage.

The exercise focused on the six building blocks of the health systems; leadership/governance, service delivery, health workforce, access to essential medicines, health information systems and financing.

Some of the key issues raised from the findings of the scoping team included low satisfaction among users of health services, rising maternal mortality ratio from 320 per 100,000 live births in 2010 to 389 per 100,000 live births in 2016 as well as declining national immunization coverage from 83% in 2014 to 73% in 2016.

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